I can’t stand cockiness, but I admit that I’m pretty great at one thing: Asking questions. I’ve asked a zillion questions ever since I was little. This is the result of two things: 1.) I am always curious 2.) I hate awkward silences more than anything.
I can leave a conversation knowing every detail of the other person’s day without revealing a single one about my own. Luckily, this generally only occurs when I’m speaking with strangers—the majority of people know that a real conversation has a bit of give-and-take. If you’re curious about the hygeine habits of Harold the Hot Dog salesman, I’ve probably at least hit on a few of the highlights.
The slight problem to this procedure? I’ve developed a slight “don’t ask, don’t tell” philosophy when it comes to revealing personal information. Clearly, I’m not embarrassed about sharing anything about myself—but I do feel extremely odd confessing to dates, dinners or drinks without someone directly asking details.
Although I ask questions partially to avoid awkwardness, I do it also because I genuinely want to hear about the other person’s day. I already experienced my own day, after all, and I don’t particularly enjoy reruns. But, then again, sometimes reruns take on a different meaning when they’re shared with someone else. Your fellow viewer may have caught something you missed.